Donald Trump’s controversial call with Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, in which he allegedly tried to pressure Zelensky to find dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, has renewed calls for the president’s impeachment. In addition, the revelation that he put a hold on $400 million in military aid for the Eastern European nation about one week before the call continues to suggest that Trump was trying to pressure Zelensky to find dirt on the Bidens. While legal experts have shot down the idea that Trump was committing treason, the scandal is shocking to many, including Fox News host Steve Doocy.
During Tuesday’s Fox & Friends, Doocy said that it would be “really off-the-rails wrong” if Trump attempted to use military aid as leverage while pressuring Ukraine to investigate his political rival, Newsweek reports.
“If the president said, you know, ‘I’ll give you the money but you gotta investigate Joe Biden,’ that is really off-the-rails wrong. But if it’s something else, you know, it would be nice to know what it is.”
Doocy also said that Fox News “confirmed” that Trump indeed withheld military aid from Ukraine before his call with Zelensky for reasons of taking corruption seriously, echoing the Washington Post report from Monday night.
Despite Trump suggesting that the hold on military aid was due to corruption concerns, Sen. Chris Murphy revealed that during a visit to Ukraine earlier in September, Zelensky was concerned about losing aid if he didn’t give in to Trump’s pressure to investigate Biden. According to Murphy, it doesn’t matter whether Trump explicitly told Zelensky that the country wouldn’t get aid if he didn’t follow through, as there is an “implicit threat” in every demand that a U.S. president makes to a foreign power.
“That foreign country knows that if they don’t do it, there are likely to be consequences,” he said.
Russia's state TV:
Ukrainian diplomat Vadim Triukhan cites German newspapers: "Trump won the first elections thanks to Russia and now he wants to be re-elected thanks to Ukraine."
Russian state TV host Evgeny Popov: "Well, how else could you put it? That's exactly what happened." pic.twitter.com/TVF0RMAso7
— Julia Davis (@JuliaDavisNews) September 24, 2019
Between Robert Mueller’s report and the recent Ukraine scandal, many Democrats are pushing to begin impeachment proceedings against Trump in the lead up to the 2020 election. In addition, the Trump administration’s planned crackdown on flavored e-cigarettes is another hot-button issue before the election.
Per Axios, the decision to ban vaping would likely harm Trump’s chances of re-election. According to the report, the number of adult vapers in key electoral states is much more than the margins that Trump won them in 2016.
“While parents may be concerned about e-cigarettes, the people who genuinely care about vaping as a voting issue so far outweighs the number of people Trump needs to win in 2020 that they are royally screwing themselves by doing this,” said Paul Blair, the director of strategic initiatives at Americans for Tax Reform.